Fall Harvest: Apples & Pumpkins

Roasting Pumpkins | photo by Emily Jones
Roasting Pumpkins | photo by Emily Jones

Article by both Emily Jones and Heidi Lee

Pumpkins, similar in growth patterns to watermelons, require an extensive network of vine to produce fruit.  I remember the one softball-sized watermelon that caused undue happiness in our gardening family, even though our pumpkin vines never produced anything. Today most fresh pumpkins an American consumer will encounter are the ornamental variety for carving. The majority of pumpkins grown are processed into canned pumpkin according to Agricultural Marketing Resource Center. Pumpkin pie is always a holiday staple for Thanksgiving and Christmas. But many chefs do not take into account the versatility of this vine fruit. Pie is the bestseller, but pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin cookies, even pumpkin puree French toast. These recipes all turn out surprisingly moist and satisfying results.

Another essential holiday fruit is the apple, which garners just about as much pie-attention as the pumpkin during the Thanksgiving feast. While pumpkins tend to be dealt with in canned form, apples when fresh and in season provide a fantastic filling with just the right amount of crunch. Again, this fruit can be put to a variety of recipes to add that great apple-cinnamon flavor to more than just the apple pie on the holiday table. The tiny test kitchen was filled with smells of both as we explored not only the world of the pumpkin and apple pie, but great and delicious alternatives that can put all that extra goodness to use.

Emily Jones

Emily Jones (COM '11) is a food writer for the Quad.

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